BMUS News - Spring 2021

Contents of BMUS News Spring 2021

My View From The Naughty Corner
Pam Parker

Update on Ultrasound 2021
Terry Humphrey

BMUS Education update
Adrian Lim

Professional Standards Update
Catherine Kirkpatrick

My View From The Naughty Corner

Time for a hug!

Bear Hug   Polite Hug Buddy Hug One-Way Hug Group Hug

There is no way of avoiding it, I will take any on offer – hug that is. I’ll even settle for a one-way hug if such a thing really exists.

One of the things I have missed most over the prolonged period of restrictions that we are all facing is the ability to reach out and hug. My parents, my friends but, most of all, those patients we see who are frightened and just in need our reassurance. I am sure you have all experienced situations in clinical practice where you are the first health care professional that your patient has seen face-to-face in recent months. Their anxieties and questions being shared with us in, perhaps, a way most of us have not experienced before. This is challenging in terms of being able to give the answers they seek and the pressure it puts on our clinical time. However, there are positives to this. Our patient/professional interactions can become more meaningful and, with building confidence and experience, those interactions can now bring added value to the examination.

Patient / Professional interaction
During a recent peer review, I noted that one of my colleagues had clearly had a lengthy interaction with a patient which lead to an extended examination and the discovery of an indolent but suspicious renal mass. The patient had come for an examination of a suspected umbilical hernia; upon chatting it became evident that the patient was worried about a bit of “blood in his pee”. Consequently, the examination was extended and the mass identified. This may be fanciful, but perhaps without that additional need to interact, the patient may not have said anything and a focussed scan performed. Who needs the hug now? Certainly our patient but also a buddy hug for my colleague I would suggest.

To meet or not meet – that is the question?
As you read this, restrictions are lifting and hopefully hugs galore – but mindful of continued government advice of course; I won’t be hugging every passing stranger despite the urge. The next strong desire is to meet people face-to-face and not in an endless stream of séance like virtual on line meetings. Again, there are benefits to the development and acceptance of virtual meetings; certainly it has created time efficiencies within the working day, but the act of meeting face-to-face, to have the chance to discuss, debate and interact is one that I miss. How many of you, like me, take pleasure and get value out of the coffee break and end of day networking and socialising that we have taken for granted at the Annual Scientific Meetings? As an organisation, BMUS had high hopes for the ASM to be held as a face-to-face event this year. Indeed, plans were afoot to create an educational and social event that we have all desired. Sadly, however, the ever changing national and international situation has made us take stock and look at the risk benefits of such an event. The huggy, social side of the president really wanted to be optimistic and strive for a face-to-face meeting; the responsible leader and manager side of the president stepped up and took the decision, following consultation with the ASM Chair, the BMUS Executive officer, BMUS Officers and our industry partners, AXREM, that such an event would be risky and potentially jeopardise the health and well-being of our delegates, staff and partners. Those networking hugs will just have to wait a little longer.

The ASM 2021
However, the team and I do hold the ASM meeting as the essence of BMUS. The educational material we deliver is hugely important in the professional and clinical development of all involved in medical ultrasound. As such, the ASM of 2021 is still being held but redesigned. There will be multiple virtual webinars over a two-week period in late November and early December. These webinars will provide balance of pre-recorded and live presentations and Q&A sessions. There will, of course be a quiz after the success of last year’s highly informative and marginally competitive event. The AGM will be, again, held virtually within the programme as will the eponymous Donald McVicar Brown lecture. Details will be published through the following months and the call for papers for those all-important proffered papers is out now. I do hope you will join me at what will be an impressive showcase of the best of ultrasound practice. Sadly, virtual hugs are hard to deliver but will be sent and gratefully received.

Brighter horizons
As we emerge into the recovery phase of the pandemic within the UK, our thoughts do go out to our colleagues in countries around the world. For those of you with family and loved ones in distant lands my heart goes out to you, as it does for those of you who have been directly impacted and affected by Covid-19 here in the UK. Thankfully, the outlook here is brighter and, I hope, that by our next newsletter hugs have become a reality for all and plans for face-to-face contact a more realistic eventuality. Until then, be wary of heading to the naughty corner, an unsuspecting hugger may just be waiting for you.

Pam Parker

BMUS Education update

It has been a long year with all the BMUS meetings and educational events held on-line since March 2020. It however has helped us hasten and develop a teaching Webinar program with a schedule of topics and speakers now lined up to the middle of 2022. Many thanks must go to all involved, particularly the speakers but, also to Emma (Tucker) who has embraced this technological challenge and now got it into a fine art. We are also indebted to Catherine (Kirkpatrick) who drove this original idea and to Alison (Hall) and Borsha (Sarker) for organising an excellent program for 2021.

While a lecture series can be very educational, ultrasound is at its best with practical hands-on sessions. Thus, as the lockdown eases and with the anticipation that face-to-face meetings will gradually be allowed, the S&E committee have lined-up a few potential educational events that are either face to face or with a practical element. These include:

September 20th 2021
Introduction to Point of Care Ultrasound Study Day – A hands on study day covering 6 clinical areas.

October 14th 2021
Obstetric Study Day – A face to face day of lectures covering scanning in the private sector, 13-week anomaly scan, Dopplers in pregnancy and more.

February 2022
Veterinary Study Day – full details to follow

March 2022
General Medical Study Day – full details to follow

For details of all planned BMUS webinars and Study Days please visit our Events page on the website, the page is regularly updated as new education is added.

We do hope to see you at many of these events where it will be nice to catch up with distant colleagues and friends in the flesh. We need not have to remember to “unmute” ourselves or battle with poor internet connections!

Meanwhile, take care and we look forward to your continued support.

Adrian Lim
President Elect

Update on Ultrasound 2021

Many of you will now be aware that, after much consideration, a decision has been made to hold the 2021 Annual Scientific Meeting as an online event. The uncertainties around holding a large scale event whilst keeping everyone safe, combined with the huge backlog of work departments are facing have meant that the online format is felt to be the best option.

Plans are now well underway for a full online meeting with the stream leads producing a hugely informative and exciting programme.

Never before have the challenges facing the NHS been so hard and with this in mind the theme for the ASM is ‘Striving for Excellence’. Guidance on leading edge clinical practice, managing workloads and maintaining standards will inform our daily efforts to do the best for patients.

Rather than the usual 3 day meeting the online format will be delivered over a 2 week period enabling delegates to watch and access sessions at convenient times. This extended timeline for the event should facilitate access to even more of the sessions than usual. Options for registration packages will be available to delegates incorporating either the entire programme or specific sessions. Details regarding this will follow soon.

I am delighted to announce that Professor Carmel Moran has accepted the invitation to deliver the Donald MacVicar Brown keynote lecture. As Professor of Translational Ultrasound at the University of Edinburgh, director of their preclinical ultrasound imaging facility and a past president of BMUS (2015-2016), Carmel is an inspirational ultrasound enthusiast. Having had the pleasure of being her co-chair at the ASM Young Investigator sessions for several years I have been fortunate to witness first hand her knowledge and optimism for future developments in medical ultrasound.

We have a packed educational programme planned which I am sure will hold interest for all. Highlights include excellent Gynaecology and Obstetrics streams with a debate addressing the continuing professional dilemmas facing obstetric ultrasound practitioners particularly in light of the added pressures of Saving Babies Lives v2 and new COVID-19 systems of work.

The Training Stream will cover transition into practice, resilience and communication skills. This is an excellent forum for students, trainees and newly qualified sonographers to present their work. The professional issues stream will explore the challenges and opportunities of both professional and clinical development with guidance on achieving what you deserve, whilst Physics sessions will explore new technologies enabling us to get the most out of our ultrasound equipment.

With new laws regarding presumed consent for organ donation in force from 2020 likely to result in increasing requests for the ultrasound assessment of organ transplants, guidance for technique and imaging will be included in the General Medical and Paediatric stream. The role of ultrasound and its place in the acute patient pathway, diagnostic challenges in Musculoskeletal practice and vascular sessions on will all make a comprehensive and valuable educational programme.

The Call for Papers is now open and we look forward to receiving your abstract submissions and joining you for lively debate and discussion.

Terry Humphrey
Chair of 2021 Organising Committee

Professional Standards Update

BMUS is well known for the professional and clinical guidelines and statements we produce. Most of these are produced by our Professional Standards and Physics and Safety Groups. Many of these Guidelines, Statements and Policies are a member only benefit and means that access to these documents is limited to members only.

Over the next 12 months BMUS will be working on the following guidelines, statements, policies or procedures, and these will either be updated versions of existing guidance or be new statements or guidelines.

  • A good practice guide for safety of the neonate
  • Supplier Policy on Pre-sets
  • Update of the Justification Document
  • Professional Guidance Document Review
  • Draft Small Animal Veterinary Ultrasound Guidelines
  • Professional guidance for fetal growth scans performed after 23 weeks of gestation

In partnership with key stakeholders

  • Safety document for lung ultrasound with ECMUS
  • With PHE - Interim guidance on Ultrasound Gel: Good infection prevention practice. Eventually producing permanent advice to replace this.
  • With the RCR updating and consolidating Focused ultrasound training standards and Ultrasound training recommendations for medical and surgical Specialties
  • AXREM / BMUS pre-owned equipment statement
  • Access to many of these will be limited to members only. This is a benefit we provide to members as part of their membership fee

Professional Guides and statements help to improve your practice, keep you and your patients’ safe and supports you with your continued professional development.

Check full list of guidelines, statements, and policies here

Catherine Kirkpatrick
Development Officer